For some reason, despite being one of the best centre backs in the world for the last couple of years and playing for Chelsea, one of the richest clubs in the world, something about David Luiz and his job security at his current role simply doesn’t add up.
Big clubs aren’t about losing their best players, and Chelsea, despite not having the history of some of its rivals at home and abroad, are a big club after 10 years of Roman Abramovich modifications and investments.
Players like David Luiz shouldn’t be placed on the transfer list or rumored to be moving. And yet he was the first name that came up when Jose Mourinho arrived at Chelsea. Luiz was fantastic last season in both his roles of a central defender and a defensive midfielder, notching up a second consecutive European title with the club, and going on to have a very good summer start in Brazil, winning the Confederations Cup.
And yet the Barcelona link won’t go away, even if Jose Mourinho has said more than once he isn’t planning on letting anyone go. He also said he isn’t planning on signing anyone more, and then went on to make a bid for Wayne Rooney.
There’s a very good chance that just like in Gareth Bale’s case, David Luiz is simply a subject of the Catalan press putting things in motion without a grasp in reality, hoping they actually materialize at some point. Barcelona need a centre back, so David Luiz was the name that came up, and it’s been pumped by the media ever since. We’ve heard nothing from Luiz, as he has a longer break than most Chelsea players due to his international duties in June.
And once again, it’s weird that this hasn’t been completely squashed, but when things are slightly kept alive, it means there’s something there, once in a while. Real Madrid and Barcelona are teams that eventually get who they want, even if it takes them some time and maybe more than a season to achieve that goal. The more concerning issue for Chelsea? South American players usually come when the two Spanish giants come calling.
Luiz isn’t a perfect centre back, not yet, if there even is such a thing. His offensive tendencies can lead to mistakes or holes he leaves behind, while he has a knack of slightly overreacting to threats on goal, leaving Cech and the defense exposed on instances where a calmer head is the recommended approach.
But with Chelsea not close to signing any centre backs at the moment, or at least not world class-caliber ones, losing Luiz is a huge hit, and shouldn’t happen. Chelsea have Branislav Ivanovic, who is as solid as they come, but Gary Cahill and especially the recent version of John Terry aren’t good enough for a team that wants to succeed in the Champions League and reclaim the league title for the first time in three years.
Luiz isn’t the best player on Chelsea’s team, but he might be their most important, and one of the few they can’t afford to let go or actually see missing significant time due to injury next season.